"Bollywood Steps" is the story of American-born Indian boys learning to connect with their heritage through Bollywood Dance, and their special bond with Bollywood choreographer Yogen Bhagat.
The boys are right at home in their native Southern California - but Yogen's very much a stranger. This is a film about family, culture, and how the boys and their teacher learn from each other.
Far from Bollywood,a group of American boys studies dance. This is a delightful film about young Indian-Americans learning the dances of their parents' native country. They are all handsome, verbal and clever and as we are introduced to their elders we can see why. These are gracious, attractive and intelligent people who are encouraging their children to be all that they can be, and the story could end there and still result in a most enjoyable piece. But there is so much more to "Bollywood Steps" that to simply review it as a feel-good film would be doing it a disservice.
These are American children and the parents we meet have achieved the American dream. They want this for their children as well, but also desire for them to have an appreciation for Indian culture. The boys realize this in dance, an art form which in India is practiced by both sexes, and the boys are quick to explain this to the camera! Their performances are energetic and entertaining, led by their engaging and wise teacher, Yogen Bhagat, who demands perfection while reminding them to respect their families, their parents and their dance. Yogen's career change tale is a story unto itself.
These boys might be playing basketball on another day of the week and the impression the parents give is that it's a fine thing to do. As one parent puts it, "He's an American kid." The parents of the young dancers have fully embraced the American culture, while keeping strong ties to that of India. They wish that for their children, and if they succeed we will all be the richer for it.
Cool doc. Rarely does a film come along that's very entertaining while also enjoyably informative. This is a story about six Indian-American pre-teens who do all the usual things; pondering what the point is of a pencil with erasers on either end, impersonating Elvis, and take 60 minutes to watch a 30 minute program. But it's also about how these guys partake every week in their dance class and embrace their Indian roots while living as typical American kids. With the dedicated guidance of their dance instructor, the boys work feverishly to perfect their troupe while understanding the importance of hard work and respect for family, their peers, and their culture. At times it seems like the instructor is frustrated. At times it seems like the kids are frustrated. But at no point do they lose focus of what's really important: family, culture, and the main theme of the flick: their dance. A fun and interesting picture that can be enjoyed by all.
Hooray for "Bollywood Steps!" A delightful documentary on the sharing of Indian culture from generation to generation through Bollywood dancing. All immigrant families who raise a family in the States struggle with how to keep a foot in the culture of both worlds, where they're from and to where they are. "Bollywood Steps" endearingly and intimately follows a group of young boys as they navigate the intricate style of Bollywood choreography. Through their performances, they become a local sensation while learning about themselves and their culture. Rich Samuels' eyes and ears have captured a slice of life that should be viewed by all.
Congratulations to Director/Producer Rich Samuels for giving us an inside look at the India/American family unit. The film showed the respect for the Indian culture that these families have for native dancing for their boys. I felt almost as proud of the boys as their families did at the Recital. This documentary should be seen by all Indian/American families.